Background Reading for MSP Managers Implementing Kanban

Transitioning to Kanban with TopLeft shifts your mindset to a new way of organizing, prioritizing, and executing work. It helps you see the bigger picture while managing the small details that keep your MSP’s engine running smoothly. While using Kanban doesn’t require being a scholar, equipping yourself with the proper knowledge can enhance your journey. Understanding the principles behind Kanban will ease the transition and amplify its impact on your operations. 

To help you on this journey, we’ve compiled a list of resources – books, articles, online courses, and other materials that shine light on Kanban and Lean methodologies. These have been carefully curated to cater to various stages of your journey, whether you’re just setting sail or looking to chart new waters.

In MSP, every role, from the CEO to the front-line technician, is integral to this transformation. A well-informed team is akin to a crew that knows how to make the ship sail at its best. These resources are your map, compass, and stars to guide you, helping you and your team to internalize best practices and bring them to life in your daily operations.


  • “Kanban: Successful Evolutionary Change for Your Technology Business” by David J. Anderson

David J. Anderson’s book breaks down the concept of Kanban and directly applies it to your MSP. It offers a step-by-step approach to implementing Kanban. It covers everything from the basics to recognizing and leveraging improvement opportunities. It explains in detail how Kanban can be a transformative force in your MSP.

Amazon link: ​​

KANBAN - Successful Evolution Change for your Technology Business


  • “The Phoenix Project” by Gene Kim

Gene Kim’s “The Phoenix Project” is an adventure into IT operations woven with the essence of Lean principles. This book brings to life the challenges and triumphs faced in information technology industries. It’s an eye-opener, showing how Lean methodologies can turn chaotic IT situations into streamlined processes. The characters and situations might feel familiar, making it a relatable and insightful read.

Amazon link:

The Phoenix Project


  • “Making Work Visible” by Dominica DeGrandis

Dominica DeGrandis’ “Making Work Visible” telescope lets you see the hidden parts of your work processes. This book goes into visualizing work, managing workflow, and eliminating inefficiencies. It’s packed with practical advice and strategies directly applicable to the daily grind of an MSP. It uncovers the invisible tasks that bog down efficiency and finds ways to streamline them.



  • “Bottleneck Rules” by Clark Ching

Clark Ching’s “Bottleneck Rules” focuses on identifying and managing bottlenecks, those pesky obstacles that can hamper your MSP’s workflow. The book offers a straightforward approach, filled with humor and practical insights, making the concept of bottlenecks understandable and manageable.

Bottleneck Rules

  • “Lean IT” by Bell & Orzen

Bell & Orzen’s “Lean IT” is a comprehensive guide that shows how to apply Lean principles to improve every aspect of your MSP operations. The book is a goldmine for tech managers, offering strategies to streamline services and enhance value in your IT offerings.

Lean IT

  • “The Lean CEO” by Jacob Stoller

Jacob Stoller’s “The Lean CEO” is like having a roundtable with the masterminds of various industries. It showcases how leaders across sectors have implemented Lean principles to transform their organizations. For MSP managers, it’s a source of inspiration and practical wisdom, showing how a Lean mindset can lead to significant organizational changes.

Lean CEO

Here are top webinars and video series for your learning:


  • TopLeft’s Webinar Series and Podcasts: 

    Our series of webinars and podcasts are like having a mentor guiding you through the intricacies of Kanban and its application in MSPs. From practical tips to in-depth discussions, these resources are designed to help you maximize TopLeft and enhance your MSP operations.


  • “Kanban: The Alternative Path to Agility” by David J. Anderson on YouTube

    David J. Anderson provides direct insights into the world of Kanban in this YouTube video. It is a masterclass from the pioneer of Kanban itself. He highlights the principles of Kanban and practical applications in the MSP space.


Here’s a Kanban community you can join:


  • Kanban Community on Reddit (r/kanban)

    Joining the Kanban community on Reddit helps you connect with fellow practitioners. Here, you can share experiences, ask questions, and receive advice from those who have walked the path. It’s a valuable platform for real-world learning and community support.



TopLeft’s solution is designed to take the theoretical foundations of Kanban and Lean and turn them into practical, everyday actions within your MSP. It’s the bridge that connects the dots between what you’ve learned and how you apply it. Each MSP is unique, and TopLeft understands that. Our Kanban solution is flexible enough to adapt to your specific operational needs. Whether managing a surge in service tickets, overseeing complex projects, or maintaining a balanced workload among your team, TopLeft is designed to handle it all easily.

If you are ready to make your MSP work smarter, not harder? TopLeft is here to help. Our Kanban boards integrate seamlessly with ConnectWise and AutoTask, making managing your projects and tasks easy. With TopLeft, you can see your workflow, keep your team on track, and adjust quickly as your business grows. Want to see how it works? Request a demo and discover how TopLeft can simplify your MSP operations today.


Contact us now to schedule a demo.